The Government and Cloud Computing

Government and federal agencies usually provide a nice example about the real-world issues of application deployment, such as the benefits that accrue with cloud computing and it’s new approach to computing. I recently noted that the NSA is planning on leveraging cloud computing to link a series of disparate intelligence databases into a single, and I’m assuming, privately-hosted solution.

For the government or federal agencies, there’s a significant amount of value in a cloud infrastructure for a single agency that is running multiple programs and data centers. For example, if an agency was running more than 1,000 servers, it could save money and become more flexible with its resources by building an internal cloud computing infrastructure. In short, a private cloud could offer almost all the benefits of a public cloud but without the attendant security and privacy headaches.

But what’s the benefits of a public cloud? For most large agencies in the government, there isn’t a lot of purchasing cost advantages with going to a third-party cloud because the real benefit is getting high utilization of your existing infrastructure and flexibility around that.

The cloud is really a fancy term for globally accessible resource pool. The key to cloud computing is the business processes that allow people to leverage the technical advancements associated with virtualization.